Errors of the Human Body

Synopsis: Seeking a new laboratory to pursue his controversial genetic research, Dr Geoff Burton takes up a position at the world-renowned Institute for Molecular Cell Biology & Genetics in wintry Dresden, Germany. His contribution to their most top-secret project - a human regeneration gene - has the potential to make something miraculous out of a personal tragedy that has haunted him for years. But when he uncovers a conspiracy amongst his colleagues, he finds instead something quite different: a terrifying new virus, with potentially devastating consequences for humanity - and for Geoff, who is not only its first victim, but its unwitting source.
Director(s): Eron Sheean
Production: IFC Films
  2 wins & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
101 min

Wake up...

Wake up...


Is this Geoff?


This is Samuel here, we were

expecting you this morning?

Oh, Samuel... ah.

I completely passed out.

Okay, we'll see you soon.

Hi, Geoff Burton for

Samuel Mead, please.

Injecting room here,

got your stereomicroscope.

Quarantine room

for incoming animals.

Microscope room with

confocal imaging station

- all the usual stuff:

Spinning disk confocal,

two photon confocal, upright

confocals with dipping lenses,

all the laser lines you could wish for.

Anything to make science beautiful.

We've got a cold room,

we've got a microbial culture room;

The autoclaves are downstairs.

There's a...

How's your

accommodation, Geoffrey?

Oh, fine, fine.

I was just wondering where

my office is going to be?

Oh, we don't really

do 'offices' per Se.

We're more communal than that.

Of course, we can loan you a lab

for the length of a given project.


Look who I found.

- Doctor Burton.

- Doctor Fiedler.

Rebekka's come a long way since

she was interned with you.

Yes, so I hear.

I'm sorry I can't leave this right now.

- We'll catch up later.

- Great.

- Shall we continue?

- Yes.

That way.

Now, there's something

else we need to do...

Sorry, I didn't...

Anyway, let's get your

security pass sorted out.

Son of a b*tch...


How are you?

I'm fine, you?

I'm good. I'm setting up

the new research lab.

The one in Munich right?

No, Dresden... remember?

So, you must be happy?

What's that supposed to mean?

- It's nothing, forget about it...

- Hey babe! I'm home.

Hold on for a second.

So... what's up?

I heard about your news.

When were

you planning to tell me?

I was going to tell you, I really was.

Fm in my second month,

I wasn't quite sure

and I didn't tell anyone else.

Well, Joe and Karla knew.

Oh, no. That was Ben.

Right. Ben.

He was excited about the

baby so he just told them.

You know...?

You're angry?


Of course.

No. I'm not angry...

I'm just, I don't know.

I gotta think about it.

Think about what?

Well, what do you want me

to say? Congratulations?

I dunno. Maybe you

can be happy for me.

What do you want?

Why did you call me?

I don't know why I called.

I miss you.

I have to go.

Geoffrey Burton comes

to us from U-Mass,

where his research

into early detection

of embryonic abnormalities has

certainly proved one of the more,

ah, fiercely-debated topics in the

scientific community this decade.

Now, I don't need to tell you

what the implications of this are.

The proverbial 'cure for cancer'

has always eluded us.

But the potential of

pre-natal discovery

certainly brings the possibility

a few steps closer.

And Geoffrey has now

come here to continue

his research in a rather less

politicized environment,

and he's going to speak

to us this morning

about the state of his work to date.

When you're ready...

Thank you.

Will you now all please join me

in welcoming Geoffrey Burton.

Thank you, thank you, Samuel...

I never intended to

become a geneticist.

My PhD. was actually on

bacterial biochemistry.

But, as I'm sure many of you know,

I was drawn to this

by my experience with my own son,

whose condition led me to focus

my research on screening embryos

for traces of rare genetic mutations

such as his.

I want to make one thing very clear:

This is not eugenics.

I'm not trying to develop

new techniques to pre-screen

people with brown eyes,

or dark skin, or freckles. I like freckles.

Diversity -

one of the things which defines us

as a species is to be celebrated.

Mutations which endanger

human life are not.

For example - here we see the

subject in the earliest stages.

The disease is non-contagious

in the traditional sense,

yet at the same time,

unusually virulent.

I've allowed myself the conceit

of calling it Burton's Syndrome.

What made this syndrome noteworthy

was its sudden appearance

in what appeared to be a

perfectly healthy subject.

Within a matter of days,

the symptoms had manifested

as a number of neoplasms,

exponentially multiplying

and growing in size.

These, ah, tumor-like

appendages eventually covered the

entire body, as we can see.

Respiration became

increasingly difficult.

They began to affect

the internal organs -

crushing the heart,

constricting the lungs...

Brain activity ceased

shortly thereafter.

From first symptoms to death, the

entire process took little over a week.

What made this unique was that

this was not an acquired disease -

like a virus, but a seemingly

random genetic mutation

occurring in gene RIPS

on chromosome twenty.

All right. Let's take a closer

look at some tissue samples...

May I sit here?

People don't want to know

the way things happen.

This fish, for example - no one wants

to think of it suffocating in agony.

We just want to fry it, eat it, forget.

Same with science.

People want the cure,

but not the research.

It makes them uncomfortable,

knowing how you got there.

What you had to do, to what.

It's true.

I would like to live a million years

just to see what we evolve into.

Do we become telepathic?

Do we get wings?

I would like wings.

And you? What would you like?

I don't know. I'd like

to be a time traveler,

you know, travel through time

backwards and forwards...

Chiba! Are those

incubations done yet?

Hello, I'm Jarek Novak.

Geoffrey Burton.

We actually met yesterday.

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Shane Danielsen

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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